Spring day in Albacete (Spain)


Today I am going to talk about  arrivals  at the airport.  I have gathered as much information as I can to help you. Arriving at an airport can be quite daunting for both English -speaking and even more so for non-English speaking travellers.  I remember arriving at Heathrow for the first time.  I was so scared.  And I could speak English!!!  So why was I so scared.  I just had to follow the instructions.  But there were so many signs and so many people.  I kept looking up and down, from side to side.  Hope you do not have to do all that I had to do.  Maybe you can understand the signs already.


Airport English

Airport English

check inAirports are stressful even in your own native country. Practise these English phrases before you travel to English speaking destinations.

Tip: Print these and keep them as a “cheat sheet” in your carry-on luggage.

Questions you will hear at the check-in counter:
Ticket please.
May I see your ticket?
Do you have an e-ticket?
Do you have some photo ID?
How many bags are you checking?
Did you pack these bags yourself?
Do you have a carry-on bag? (a bag or purse to take on the airplane)
Do you require special assistance? (example a “wheelchair”)
Have you paid your airport improvement fee/tax?
Would you like a window or an aisle seat? (aisle is pronounced “eye + l”)

Problems you may hear:
Your baggage is overweight. (Remove some contents or pay a fine.)
Your carry-on luggage is too large.
Your flight is delayed. (It’s late.)
Your flight has been cancelled. (You must rebook a new flight)
Your connecting flight/connection has been cancelled/is delayed.
Your ticket is expired.
Your passport is expired.

airport screenCommands and questions at the Security Checkpoint:
Boarding pass, please.
ID please. (show your photo ID)
Spread your arms out please. (Put your arms up and out to the sides of your body)
Take your shoes off.
Open your bag.
Take off/remove your belt.
Do you have any change in your pockets?
Do you have any metals?
Do you have any food/produce?
Do you have any liquids or medicine?
Walk through.
You must dump all food or beverages. (You can’t bring it through the gates.)

Questions YOU may need to ask:
Is my flight on time?
When should I be at the gate?
Where is the boarding gate?
Where is the washroom?
Can I get a window seat?
Is there somewhere to eat?
Can I get a coffee at the gate?
Is my connection on time?
Where do I collect my baggage?
Where can I find a taxi?
Where is the departure gate?
Where is the arrival gate?
Where is the check-in desk for ….airlines?
Where is the domestics level?
Where is the international level?

More Airline Vocabulary
Practise Checking-in

cheat sheet: a small piece of paper with answers or hints that you have with you
departures: flights that are leaving this airport
arrivals: flights that are landing at this airport
e-ticket: a ticket you purchased online and printed from your computer
aisle seat: a seat next to the long walking path on the plane
boarding pass: the ticket you give at the gates (has your seat number)
belt: clothing item that holds up pants (sets off metal detector)
metals: items such as jewellery, coins, belt buckles, knives, keys
liquids: beverages
expired: no longer useful (the date has passed)
check-in: show your ticket and ID and hand in your baggage
connection: the point where your plane lands and you must catch another plane
domestic: in the same country as the airport
international: in a different country than the airport


You will probably arrive at one of London’s five commercial airports. Transport links from all of the airports into the centre of London are good, although some are further away than others. There is information below on how to get from the airport to your accommodation and you can choose for us to organise your transfer or to make your own way.

Heathrow Airport

By Underground

London Underground’s Piccadilly line provides you with a quick, cost-effective route to the airport from the capital. There are three Underground stations (Heathrow Terminals 2 and 3 and one each at Terminal 4 and 5; in fare zone 6) serving the central terminal area. Journey time is under an hour and you shouldn’t have to wait longer than ten minutes for a train – even off-peak. Purchase a Travelcard and you’re covered for buses and some trains too. Underground walkways link the Heathrow tube station with the terminals. Tickets are available at London Underground stations; from ticket offices or machines. For travelling to many of our host families, it is practical to take the underground to Acton Town and then to take a taxi (there is a taxi office in Acton Town underground station).

Trains to central London

Station First train Last train
Terminals 2 & 3 05:12 (Sun 05:56) 23:45 (Sun 23:28
Terminal 4 05:02 (Sun 05:46) 23:35 (Sun 23:15*)
Terminal 5 05:23 (Sun 06:07) 23:42 (Sun 23:25)

*change at Heathrow Terminals 2 & 3

Trains from central London (Piccadilly Circus)

Station First train Last train
Terminals 2 & 3 05:47 (Sun 07:05) 00:32 (Sun 23:38)
Terminal 4 05:42 (Sun 07:05*) 23:09 (22:40)
Terminal 5 05:47 (Sun 07:05) 00:22 (Sun 23:24)

*change at Hatton Cross

These times are subject to change – it is advisable to check with London Underground travel information before travelling.

By Train

The Heathrow Express is a non-stop train service that offers the fastest travel option between Heathrow Airport and Paddington. Paddington is not particularly conveniently located for the school or for most of the accommodation we use but it is convenient for Central London. Services run every 15 minutes and the journey time is just 15 minutes; 7/8 minutes more to and from Terminal 4. A Express Saver fare is £22.0 and a Express Saver return is £36. For details of special offers and to pre-book tickets visit the Heathrow Express Website or ring 0845 600 1515 (UK only).

By Taxi

Each Heathrow terminal has clearly signposted taxi ranks. Expect a fare of around £30-35 to West London.  The journey time is about 30 minutes. Only take a licensed or London (black) cab.

Heathrow Airport Website

Heathrow Airport Guide

Gatwick Airport

By Train

The fastest train service into Central London is the Gatwick Express which travels direct to London Victoria station and operates seven days a week. Trains are non-stop and run every 15 minutes from 05:00 to 23:45 and at 03.30, 04.30, 00:02 and 00:32, with a journey time of 30 minutes on Monday – Saturday and 35 minutes on Sundays. Click here for ticket fares. Southern and Thameslink also run a service from Gatwick, with a slightly longer journey time of 35 minutes. There are four/five trains per hour, Monday to Friday, with an hourly service overnight.

For information on these services call the National Rail Enquiry service on 08457 48 49 50 or see the Gatwick Express Website.

By Taxi

Gatwick is further from London than Heathrow and we do not recommend a taxi since they are very expensive. If you want the convenience of a taxi, you should book an airport pickup.

Gatwick Airport Website

London City Airport

By Underground

Take the Docklands Light Railway to Bank underground station. Here you can change to the Central Line, which goes quickly to West London. Unless your accommodation is near to a Central Line station, we suggest that you go to Shepherds Bush and take a taxi from there.

By Taxi

You can take a taxi from London City airport to West London.  Only take a licensed or London (black) cab.

London City Airport Website

Luton Airport

By Train

Thameslink operates a fast, frequent service direct between central London and Luton Airport Parkway train station. Luton Airport Parkway is around 35 minutes away from King’s Cross Thameslink station. When you land at London Luton Airport, catch the free Luton Airport Express shuttle bus from outside the terminal at Bay 1. This will take you to Luton Airport Parkway station in around 10 minutes where you can catch a Thameslink train southbound into London.

By Coach

Green Line 757 provides an express coach link between London Luton Airport and Central London. For information visit the Arriva Website.

By Taxi

Luton is further from London than Heathrow and we do not recommend a taxi since they are very expensive. If you want the convenience of a taxi, you should book an airport pickup.

Luton Airport Website

Stansted Airport

By Train

The airport railway station is situated below the terminal building. Train tickets can be purchased at the railway station. The Stansted Express is a fast and convenient way to and from Stansted Airport, with trains departing every 15 or 30 minutes, with an average journey time of approximately 45 minutes. They arrive at London Liverpool Street, and from there we suggest that you take the Central Line, which goes quickly to West London. Unless your accommodation is near to a Central Line station, we suggest that you go to Shepherd’s Bush station and take a taxi from there.  Only take a licensed or London (black) cab.

At the time of writing the last train to leave Stansted Airport for Liverpool Street leaves at 00.30 (Monday – Thursday and Saturday), 01.30 (Friday and Sunday).  Click here to check the most up to date timetable.  However, the Stansted Express takes approx. 45 minutes from Stansted Airport to Liverpool Street.  The last Central Line tube to leave Liverpool Street travelling west to Shepherd’s Bush is at 0022 (Monday – Saturday) or 2338 (Sundays), so make sure that you can connect to the tube in Liverpool Street.  Click here to check the first and last trains on all tube lines.  We recommend that you allow at least one hour between your train leaving Stansted Airport and the last tube so you have time to buy your tube ticket and get to the platform before the last train.

If your flight is due to arrive late in the day and you are concerned about a possible delay and the impact this would have on your journey into and across London click here to read about our airport transfers.

By Coach

The coach station is located below between Zone C and D of the Short Stay Car Park. Tickets can be purchased from the coach ticket desk in the arrivals area in the terminal (06:00 – 21:30) or in the coach station (24 hours a day, 7 days a week). Tickets may also be purchased on the coach. Services include:

  • A6 – London Victoria (Central London)
    Connects Stansted Airport with London Victoria – Central London via Golders Green, Finchley Road Underground Station, St Johns Wood, Baker Street, Marble Arch and Hyde Park Corner.
    Operates up to every 15 minutes – 24 hours a day.
    Further information: 0871 781 8181 (UK only) or visit the National Express Website.
  • A8 – London Liverpool Street and London Victoria (Central London)
    Operates to London Liverpool Street and Victoria every 20 minutes between 0000 and 0430 hours.
    Further information: 0871 781 8181 (UK only) or visit the National Express Website.
  • A9 – London Stratford
    A non-stop service to London Stratford every 30 minutes, 24 hours a day.
    Further information: 0871 781 8181 (UK only) or visit the National Express Website.

By Taxi

Stansted is further from London than Heathrow and we do not recommend a taxi since they are very expensive. If you want the convenience of a taxi, you should book an airport pickup. Click here to read about our airport transfers.

This information has come from


I hope that you find the conversation and the you   tube videos helpful. Bye for now.


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